When I lived in Victoria, BC, there was always a ship idling in the harbour, engine turning over, a low steady hum that was always there when you went to the water.

Well, they have built an on-shore power plant for that ship, and it looks like they may have brought in a new one, but the vessel is always there…waiting.

When a cable breaks out in the North Pacific, this ship is gone in an hour. Apparently there are cable repair ships stationed all over the world…waiting.

Here’s Neal Stephenson’s article on the first segment of FLAG, and the whole submarine cable business.